What is Subsistence Agriculture? A Comprehensive Overview in 2023

What is subsistence agriculture? Subsistence agriculture or farming has been a part of human history for thousands of years. It is an agricultural production system where the farmers produce crops and livestock primarily to meet their own basic needs rather than earning cash income.

This type of agriculture is practiced in many parts of the world, particularly in developing countries, where land is available but financial resources are limited. In this article, we will take a deep dive into what subsistence agriculture is and how it affects small-scale farmers across the globe.

What is Subsistence Agriculture?

Subsistence Agriculture is an ancient form of farming that has been practiced for thousands of years by people all around the world. It is a type of agriculture where farmers grow crops and livestock to feed their families, rather than for sale in the market.

This form of agriculture is the opposite of Commercial Agriculture, which focuses on producing crops for sale. Subsistence farmers must grow a wide variety of crops and livestock that are adapted to local conditions, such as grains, fruits, vegetables and smallholder livestock production.

Subsistence farming is a traditional and labor-intensive practice that provides families with food security. It is still widely practiced around the world today and helps to preserve cultures, knowledge systems, and tradition.

Subsistence Farming Is Ancient

Subsistence farming is an ancient practice that has been integral to the development of human society back thousands of years, and it was a major contributor to the rise of human civilization.

It allowed for people to settle in one place and domesticate plants, such as corn, beans, tomatoes, squash, and potatoes which are still used today.

Subsistence farming is a fascinating part of our history that has had a lasting impact on our lives today. It is amazing to think that something so simple could have such a profound effect on how we live now.

Without subsistence farming, it is likely that our world would look very different than it does today. Subsistence farming has enabled us to create societies with complex systems and technologies that allow us to thrive in ways we never thought possible before.

Diversified Methods

Polyculture and subsistence farming are two methods of diversified agriculture that have been used for centuries to sustain small plots of land. Polyculture is the practice of growing multiple crops in the same space, while subsistence farming is a form of self-sufficiency where farmers grow enough food to feed their families.

These methods are essential for small-scale farmers who don’t have access to large-scale monocultures.

Polyculture and subsistence farming are useful techniques used by farmers to reduce pest problems, maintain soil fertility and have access to a variety of food sources year round.

Where do People Practice Subsistence Farming Today?

Subsistence farming is a type of agricultural practice that has been used for centuries to provide food and sustenance for rural populations.

It is still widely practiced today in many parts of the world, particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa where the majority of the rural poor depend on their land for survival.

In Tanzania, for example, agriculture cumulates to 28% of the country’s GDP and 73% of the population lives in rural areas – 19 million people live on small land holdings and practice subsistence farming.

Subsistence farming is practiced in many regions around the world, using a variety of techniques. These range from traditional slash-and-burn methods to more modern agroforestry and permaculture methods. People who practice subsistence farming are able to save money by relying on their land for food and other needs.